Super Tuesday Election Menu With Predictions

Each presidential election year James and I gather small groups of different people together for some food as we watch the political events take place around the nation.  For now it is the primary elections, with convention season in the summer,  debates in the fall, concluding with the Super Bowl of politics the first Tuesday in November.   I can not think of a better evening than to have great food, stimulating conversation, and a strong dose of national politics so to allow everyone to have a nice time.

Tuesday night it gets really percolating with eleven states in play.  But to what degree any state will produce a surprise for either party or for any campaign is hard to imagine.  Yet there is every reason to be excited.  What will the spread be between candidates?  What types of voters aligned themselves to support candidates from state to state?  How will events at the polls impact the deep divisions within the Republican Party?   Will the GOP field shrink?  Will Democrats feel it is time for the nomination fight to stop?    Can those who want it to continue find a realistic roadmap for such an outcome?  How will victory and concession speeches be presented?

Sadly, for the GOP and the nation, Donald Trump wins everywhere except in Texas.  In the Lone Star State Ted Cruz will win his only contest of the night.  While Marco Rubio has made recent headlines he has also hurt his image.  Getting into the sewer with Trump was not my idea of what it meant to take on the orange-skinned man.  I wanted Rubio to rise to the debate but do so with intellect and lifting words.  Talking about the size of Trump’s whatever is just beneath the level of discourse that this country needs–or expects.  For a whole number of reasons Rubio will not win a single state.

Ben Carson will be the man staying in the race regardless of how shabby he does as his whole purpose for campaigning is to see how much money he can take from the pockets of Christians in this nation.  When it comes to who will exit the race following Tuesday it would seem Cruz is the most logical choice as the establishment does not like or have an interest in him.  Rubio seems stuck in the mud but at this point he and John Kasich are the only real chances to stop Trump.  If there is even a realistic chance of that still happening.

Democrats will feel the heat of the night in Colorado where I predict Bernie Sanders will win.   I also know Vermont will go to his column.  But everything else–and that means many delegates–are all in Clinton’s column.   That includes, as our friend Rolf asked, also in American Samoa.

For dinner James is making a green salad, homemade Savory Pumpkin Soup with sausage, Pasta Raphael with artichokes, and dessert bars.

The herbs and spices for the main dish makes Pasta Raphael quite remarkable. (This online version is not the one prepared here, as we replace parsley with cilantro, remove all the onions in favor of shalots, and use tons of Parmesan cheese.)  The original recipe came from the spouse of my best friend, and it continues to amaze those who sit at our table and taste it for the first time.  The fact it is so tasty, I hasten to add, is due to how the ingredients all blend to make a winning combination.  The aroma of the garlic and shallots simmering in olive oil will make every partisan turn to their neighbor and say ‘can’t we just get along?’

Needless to say there will also coffee and teas served.  And James would yell out to me if he knew what I was typing–for Pete’s sake he would demand–let folks know we are civilized and add wine to the menu, too.

Most important, of course, is that Tuesday night is another page in our nation’s long, delightful, and at times unreasonable political narrative.  I always think it best to experience such events with others who feel the passion of the night as I do.

May it always be this way.

Hell Freezes At Supreme Court

For the first time in ten years Justice Clarence Thomas has asked questions during a Supreme Court argument.  It must have felt as if hell froze when Thomas uttered his words.

I have never thought Thomas to be bright and have chided him for using crayons to write his rulings.   People have tried to figure why he remains silent on the court.  I have always just assumed that he has no time to ask questions as he is always needing to look down at his drink to make sure there is no pubic hair near it.

Moment Of Truth For Donald Trump Supporters

Unless the supporters of Donald Trump are measuring themselves for brown shirts they need to now admit that Trump’s failure to explicitly disavow the Ku Klux Klan simply makes him disqualified for seeking the White House. I have heard and read a lot over the past seven months but the revulsion I have over Trump’s lack of common sense, moral fiber, back bone, and mental abilities concerning the KKK is breathtaking.

If one were forced to concoct an outrageous scenario involving Trump it would have been almost impossible to come up with that which played out this weekend.

There is no way to explain it, or spin it, or wish it away.  When Donald Trump would not or could not explicitly disavow the Ku Klux Klan and former Grand Wizard David Duke he plowed his campaign into the political sewer.  There is no one who can come near Trump without also carrying the stink that he now owns.

Trump is now even more a target of the rage and deep concern about the current and future state of the Republican Party.   There is a deep howling of disgust that will grow and emerge ever more forcefully to make sure that the nominee going into the fall campaign will not be Trump.  The party of Abe Lincoln can not be allowed to have the dirty foul stain of Donald Trump placed upon it.

But what about Trump’s supporters?   What course will they take?  Now it will be time to weigh their character as the hours and days pass.

Will they flock and swoon and finish Trump’s campaign lines at rallies or will these men and women find their own moral compass and jettison this awful example of what happens when ego and hate are allowed to merge in an uncontrolled way?

The Economist Cover: Fire Donald Trump

Time to fire Donald Trump.


Here is a solid piece of writing and one that strikes a chord with this blogger.  I am sure many of my fellow citizens feel the same.

Polls show that 46% of Americans of voting age have a “very unfavourable” opinion of Mr Trump, which suggests his chances of winning a general election are slight. But Mr Trump’s political persona is more flexible than that of any professional politician, which means he can take it in any direction he wants to. And whoever wins the nomination for either party will have a decent chance of becoming America’s next president: the past few elections have been decided by slim margins in a handful of states. When pollsters ask voters to choose in a face-off between Mr Trump and Hillary Clinton, the Democratic front-runner wins by less than three percentage points. Mr Trump would have plenty of time to try to close that gap. An economy that falls back into recession or an indictment for Mrs Clinton might do it for him.

That is an appalling prospect. The things Mr Trump has said in this campaign make him unworthy of leading one of the world’s great political parties, let alone America. One way to judge politicians is by whether they appeal to our better natures: Mr Trump has prospered by inciting hatred and violence. He is so unpredictable that the thought of him anywhere near high office is terrifying. He must be stopped.

There is nothing in Mr Trump’s career—during which he has maintained close control of the family business he runs, and often acted on instinct—to suggest that he would suddenly metamorphose into a wise chairman, eager to take counsel from seasoned experts. For those who have yet to notice, Mr Trump is not burdened by a lack of confidence in his own opinions.

If The Economist had cast a vote in the Republican primaries in Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina or Nevada we would have supported John Kasich. The governor of Ohio has a good mixture of experience, in Congress and in his home state as well as in the private sector. He has also shown bravery, expanding Medicaid in Ohio though he knew it would count against him later with primary voters, as indeed it has. But this is not Mr Kasich’s party any more. Despite his success in New Hampshire, where he came second, Mr Kasich is the preferred choice of less than 10% of Republican voters.

If the field remains split as it is now, it is possible for Mr Trump to win with just a plurality of votes. To prevent that, others must drop out. Although we are yet to be convinced by Mr Rubio hhe stands a better chance of beating Mr Trump than anyone else. All the other candidates—including Mr Cruz, who wrongly sees himself as the likeliest challenger—should get out of his way. If they decline to do so, it could soon be too late to prevent the party of Abraham Lincoln from being led into a presidential election by Donald Trump.

Oscar Fever Is High With My Hopes Resting On “Brooklyn”

Nothing shines brighter tonight than the Oscars.  And when it comes to perfect movie making nothing outperforms, in my estimation, than Brooklyn.

This telling of a love story with charm, hope, and sweetness made for a grand cinematic event.  Saoirse Ronan stars as a young woman forced to move from 1950s rural Ireland to New York, in Nick Hornby’s adaptation of Colm Tóibín’s coming-of-age novel.  I am hoping the film can break through as an outsider for Best Picture.

When America Thought About Big, Bold Ideas

I have long argued that we need to have national leaders who will again set our sights on some huge goal that will instill interest and desire to attain knowledge in the sciences and math akin to what President Kennedy did with the moon landing.  We always play to the short game in this country due to what is termed ‘economic limitations’ and in so doing fail to dream big and bold.  Since Americans like to see the sunny side of politics–Reagan’s morning in America type of campaign–would it not be great if some presidential candidate would speak to this nation’s ability to dare again for greatness?

I am so tired of the bluster and bombast and small ideas and limited scope that seems to hold our candidates hostage.

I suspect many of my fellow citizens are waiting to be challenged with a goal that will move our nation forward in a daring and powerful way.  Question is do we have a presidential contender who can lift us up in the way Kennedy did?

This past week was the anniversary of one of those shining examples (below) that we have too few of these days.  This national memory should alert us all to the possibilities that can be ours to realize.  This event from 1962 should also help foster a passion for doing something great again.



Big Win Coming For Hillary Clinton Tonight In South Carolina

The exit polling today from South Carolina underscores what we have known for months.  Hillary Clinton would be a hard candidate to upset in this state, or for that matter, in any primary state where a large percentage of the electorate is African-American.

Today’s primary is the first to test the Democratic candidates’ popularity among a large number of black voters.  Bernie Sanders has not been a continuous voice for this demographic over the years in the way the Clintons have been.  Clinton and her husband have been advocating for decades on behalf of black voters and the fruit from those endeavors are showing up today at the polls.

Preliminary exit poll results indicate that blacks account for six in ten South Carolina Democratic primary voters today, and that will be the key to Clinton’s to-be-sure smashing victory this evening.  Even more telling and reason to show the power her candidacy has for the general election is the fact that today’s outpouring of voters is on pace to break the state’s record, 55 percent in 2008 – more than in any other state that year.

Blacks this year made up 13 percent of voters in Nevada last weekend, where Clinton won them by an overwhelming 76-22 percent.

Doing The Happy Dance

This morning James raked our lawn for the return of spring.  There is always an eagerness to alert Ole Man Winter that once we get to a certain point on the calendar, though he is loved in previous months, if is time he retire until the following November.    So the lawn is now cleaned up, and with the large pile of mulch we spread over all the flower beds and around bushes last October there is now the waiting and watching for the start of green.

And would you believe that we have sprouts up!

All sorts of bulbs have sent up their shoots–tulips, crocuses, snow flowers, etc.  But there are no signs of jonquils, however.

So what does this mean?

Well, I am now doing my happy dance while trying not to spill the mug of coffee.

Meanwhile my list of needs from the garden center is growing.  Do the merchants know I am ready?

There are the needed bags of rocks for places under the bird feeder and the picnic table, flower pots and potting soil, a half-barrel for a walk-way, another rake, grass seed for a low-light area as the dogwood branches get thicker and blocks more of the sun, more pavers for flower bed at the intersection, and stepping stones for the path off the ‘coffin porch’.

When spring fever hits it is hard not to burst with joy.  I get this way every year and can only liken it to how it felt as a kid when Christmas neared.  This year I do not have the excuse about a long hard cold winter needing to be remedied.   So I just fall back on the truism that living in Wisconsin means never needing a reason to rejoice come the warm days return.